Samhain~Halloween Customs and Practices III
What about those horrible Witches everywhere and the annoying Trick or Treaters? This is the time of year that the Scots believed that the Cailleach, the Hag, arises from stone to walk the Earth. She actually had a blue-gray or almost black face. She is an important supernatural being in Gaelic myth. This is the time of year to honor the goddess in her Crone form. And yes, Cailleach was often considered both scary and reverently comical, for winter was a fearful time and best faced with humor. Considering leaving some water for Her as She is thirsty when She awakens.
The other modern annoyance for some Pagans, Trick or Treat, seems to have been started in Antiquity by young people who disguised themselves and requested hospitality from all they met. This has been a practice at all Fire Festivals in some variation. It is always vital for us to treat them well, we can never be sure that one really is a costumed child, and we don’t want to deal with one of Their Tricks if they should be our Ancestors or a supernatural entity. There is also speculation that this might have been a method for widows and orphans to procure their winter stores.
We still have the “Trick” aspect when young people vandalize and create general chaos despite getting “Treats” this is of some antiquity. In Scotland, the youths would break things, tear up gardens, and run rampant to destroy the past year. This represented the actions of the Otherworldly beings and rendered that which was left useless to humans, therefore only of value to those of the Otherworld. Samhain is really the time between two years and is, therefore, a time of chaos, when the Otherworld rules. Afterward, a new order would be created for the New Year.